I just watched A.X.L, a small budget film $10M (in comparison to other films in Hollywood land). The film introduces the idea how technology & robotic intelligence can be nondestructive, humane, even if in this film it was from a dog, in contrast to The Terminator or The Matrix (the godfather of Artificial Intelligence & living in the digital world). Although in an interview with the film’s main actor Alex Neustaedter, he said the film is “a story about ‘Miles’ who finds this dog and finds this woman at the same time” (that’s Sara Reyes played by Becky G).
A.X.L is a film that introduces us to new talents in the movie biz. This talent, in my humble opinion, I find it to be the director Oliver Daly. The visual technology used to build the robotic dog in the film shows another talent about the people working behind the scenes in animation and visual effects. Perhaps this is where the $10M budget mostly went. And it worked. This was not a poor wanna be AI robotic dog.
Animation is evolving fast. Producing content in the visual world, whether it’s a movie or YouTube videos require higher entry level skills. You can’t produce a film like A.X.L with low animation techniques and say “well, we were experimenting” it would be a waste of money. Steven Spielberg had the luxury of experimenting when he created E.T, he is one of the founders of the new movie era, in this same era that Spielberg helped creating, if film producers and directors don’t produce highly animated and savvy visual effects it can be hard for their films to succeed.
It had a bad fortune though, A.X.L didn’t earn much in the box office, only $8M. It can be bad fortune and other factors, like marketing, in my research to write this article I found there was not many interviews or much written about this film.
A.X.L didn’t do well in the box office perhaps it had to do with marketing but animation and directing wise we were introduced to new blood in the movies industry.
I know the film was released in 2018, sorry, I watched it today, due to the self-imposed quarantine because of the Corona virus I have been binging infront of t.v.
‘I am looking forward’ to see Oliver Daly’s upcoming projects, I hope he would work with the same animator and visual effects team again. Can’t be 100% sure but will say this, he is a rising director to watch for.
Featured image source: IMDB